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Old 09-22-2008, 12:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

I looked over the forum and found some things to help me but nobody has had the same situation exactly so I figured I'd start a new topic.

I have a (Gateway) Laptop that was top of the line a little over 3 years ago. This laptop has either an 80G or 120G HDD, can't remember now because I'm at school. I also have a 120G External HDD. Right now the laptop is running XP.

What I want to do is wipe my laptop's HDD and put Vista, XP, and a couple versions of Linux on it... All of which I have free access to through my program at school. I haven't had real virus trouble but AVG does detect what it considers to be a couple viruses/malware/adware so I want to wipe the HDD anyway. I know these OS' will take a lot of space so my external HDD will be there for any programs and files I install later.

What do I need to do to get this done? I know there are different options for partitioning and running multiple OS' but I am not well informed. I would rather not go the Virtual PC route but if need be I also have access to that.

Thanks for any help you can give me,
NewTechGuy
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Old 09-22-2008, 12:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

How to dual-boot Vista with Linux (Vista installed first) -- the step-by-step guide with screenshots

Install the other OS's as normal, and just add them to the GRUB bootloader (easiest way), or if you'd rather prefer Vista's bootloader, it has instructions on how to add OS's there as well.
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Old 09-23-2008, 12:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

What I've done:
-backed up files to external hdd
-wiped laptop HDD with DBAN
-installed XP
---During install I put XP on a 60G partition assuming the other 10G would be able to
---be turned into a partition for VISTA.
-Went through entire dual boot guide
---Now have a 30G that still hopefully has XP on it
---Followed by a 30G partition that has Vista on it
---Followed by a 15G empty NTSF partition that I'll figure out what to do with later

My problem right now is trying to figure out how to get GRUB going, I've downloaded the latest version and have no idea how to unpack it as all tutorials say to do. What is a .tar.gz file anyways? Am I supposed to have Linux installed just to get GRUB onto my system? I'll update when I figure out if XP is still on my system.

**update**
If XP was still on the first partition I had no way of getting there so I tried to reinstall it to the first partition again. Up until the first restart it went flawless but when the computer restarted it said hit any key to boot from disk and just froze black screen when I hit enter. Both OS's are inaccessible to me now... HELP! I'm a moron lol.
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Old 09-23-2008, 12:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

Yes, you have to install linux to get grub on there. It gets installed automatically when you install Linux (GRUB that is).

tar.gz is the *nix version of a RAR file, pretty much. It's a compressed format that has to be unarchived.
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Old 09-23-2008, 10:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

Nothing was loading so Im starting over...

I've Removed my partitions and I have G Parted open with 75Gig of unallocated space to work with. How much space should I allow for Vista? For XP? For Linux(I will be putting 2 or 3 versions on it)? XP will be my main OS and Vista just to try it out.

Do I need a new partition for Linux at all?

What should I format each partition in, NTSF? Should they be primary partitions? What exactly is the difference between primary and other options?

Can I partition my external HDD and use that for an OS if I decide to?

If so would that OS be able to run on other systems straight from the external drive?

Will I be able to get to/use the same files and programs from both XP and Vista with only 1 install? I.E. antivirus.

Would this take a seperate partition?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm just in learn mode and searching the internet hasn't shown many results.
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Old 09-23-2008, 11:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

One way to go is to just to start over and install your Linux OS's and make sure during the first install you set all of your partitions, you will need a ext3 partition and a linux swap partition for each Linux insatllation so make sure you create both of those partitions for each. On the first Linux installation the GRUB bootloader will be placed in the first sector of your hard drive which will always allow you to chose your OS that will be loaded. After you have your Linux OS's installed just install windows on the remaining partition.

What versions of Linux are you going to run??
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Old 09-23-2008, 11:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

Thanks, which of those drives will be primary/logical/extended?
What space should I allow for each linux partition and windows partitions?
I plan to use my external drive for all program installs and files so this entire 75G can be used by OS's.
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Old 09-24-2008, 12:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewTechGuy View Post
Thanks, which of those drives will be primary/logical/extended?
What space should I allow for each linux partition and windows partitions?
I plan to use my external drive for all program installs and files so this entire 75G can be used by OS's.

All your linux partitions should be primary and then you need to change the swap partition to the linux swap type (#82).

Storage that you need is going to depend on what you are running, if you run a server that has no GUI it takes only a few gigs to load the OS. I would suggest though that you get a laregr drive since you are going to be loading like 5 OS's.
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Old 09-24-2008, 08:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: XP Vista and Linux on Laptop

Oh and I double checked and on my Ubuntu Linux Server it installed with 1.7 GB of drive space used but it is a server so it has no desktop or GUI's, all CLI. I administer it remotely using SSH from my windows desktop PC.
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